Hello? or Hola? a Theoretical Look at Spanglish Essay

2501 Words Mar 22nd, 2008 11 Pages
The theories learned from communications classes can be applied in everyday life. They can especially be applied to films. Films are the outlets of human communication –mimicking life. The film that we will be examining and applying theories to is Spanglish. The film was written and directed by James L. Brooks and was released in December, 2004. The tagline “a comedy with a language all its own,” (IMDb) truly describes the motion picture. Spanglish is about a mother (Flor Moreno) and her daughter (Cristina Moreno) who are forced to leave Mexico for Flor to find work in America. Flor starts working for the Clasky’s whose home in Las Angeles leads Flor into a different culture. John Clasky, the head of the household is a down to …show more content…
Another theory that can be applied to the film is standpoint theory. According to Wood (2004), standpoint theory is defined as something that “arises out of the material, social, and symbolic conditions that shape a group’s experiences” (213). To make it clear, a standpoint is a learned position rather than a cultural or other external expectation. As we learned this semester, you can only have a standpoint if you are in opposition with the power sources—the white, middleclass, heterosexual male (Kramer, 2007c). This theory comes from the phenomenological, being that it a collective thought rather than individual. Using the term “critical race theory” which talked about by Wood (2004), suggest that race is something that was constructed rather than something that is innate. Theorists who use this theory suggest that “race is constructed to turn race into a critical perspective through which to examine and challenge cultural views of justice and fairness.” (214) Also included in standpoint theory is the idea of situated knowledges. This would include ideas shared by cultures or other groups of people. Standpoint can be seen in the film. Flor and her daughter, as stated before, are from Mexico whereas the Clasky’s are wealthy Los Angeles suburbanites. Flor belongs to a standpoint of poor Mexican immigrants. According to Wood, those of a lower class have a more accurate

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